GAIL India set to venture into H2 generation, to ramp up RE portfolio
State-run Gas Authority of India (GAIL) has announced that it will venture into hydrogen generation and take the procurement route to scale up its renewable energy portfolio as it pivots business beyond natural gas to align with the energy transition being observed globally.
As part of a drive to adopt cleaner forms of energy, GAIL will be laying pipeline infrastructure to connect consumption centres to gas sources while also expanding its renewable energy portfolio, GAIL Chairman and Managing Director Manoj Jain stated.
"The global energy sector is witnessing a paradigm shift in recent years as the world is transitioning to a sustainable energy future," he stated in the company's latest annual report.
To achieve a cleaner primary energy mix for India, the government is emphasizing the expansion of the natural gas sector to accomplish a gas-based economy along with growth in renewables. GAIL as a leading integrated energy major has aligned with this vision, he said.
The firm is laying around 6,000-kilometres of the pipeline, comprising a west coast to east coast pipeline from Mumbai to Jharsuduga in Odisha via Nagpur, he said. It at present has around 13,700-km of the natural gas pipeline network.
GAIL "will be selectively investing in the renewable energy domain given the future growth potential," he said. The company "has been exploring for opportunities to scale up the RE portfolio from the current 130 MW through bidding and other inorganic routes such as mergers and acquisitions."
"In addition, the company is also foraying into ethanol and hydrogen generation," he said.
As per Jain, GAIL has the largest and most diverse LNG portfolio in India that can offer both stable prices and reliable supply to consumers.
The company "shall be pushing for higher gas usage in the industrial segment, transport segment using CNG and LNG, Trigeneration, cold storage, etc," he said, adding the firm was looking for opportunities to supply gas in the new sectors like LNG trucking (LNG for long-haul transportation).
He stated GAIL is also looking to expand its presence in petrochemicals and diversifying into high-margin downstream businesses.
"The focus is on having polypropylene (PP) production capacity through setting up two polypropylene units (Propane Dehydrogenation Polypropylene Plant - PDHPP in Usar, Maharashtra and PP plant at Pata, Uttar Pradesh) and assessing opportunities in certain specialty chemicals in India," Jain said.